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GOVERNMENT RELATIONS


Alliance Legislative Report 98-36

Distributed via Email: February 28, 2014

The House Revenue Committee has adopted the revenue estimates the House of Representatives plans to use in crafting the Fiscal Year 2015 state budget. The budget numbers are included in HR 842 and HJR 80. The estimate for total revenue available for the next fiscal year is $34.5 billion – this is about $951 million less than the current fiscal year. The current income tax rates, for both individuals and corporations, will decrease on Jan. 1 – half way through the next fiscal year. The income tax increase enacted in 2011 was meant to be temporary and the individual rate will drop from 5% to 3.75% and the corporate rate will fall from 7% to 5.25%. This will result in $1.6 billion less revenue coming into state coffers.

The Senate is also working on a budget plan that could be based on a different revenue estimate. Before the end of the session, House and Senate budgeteers and leaders will have to agree on a set of numbers and, ultimately, an FY ’15 state budget. These discussions at the legislative level are occurring before Governor Pat Quinn delivers his revenue predictions and spending priorities in his state budget address later this month.

BILL ACTION FROM THIS WEEK

SB 2647 ( Althoff, R-McHenry) places school districts under local government zoning ordinances. The bill, opposed by the Alliance, was approved by the Senate Education Committee with the understanding that the sponsor would work with opponents to find compromise language.

SB 3113 ( Barickman, R-Bloomington) increases the debt limit under certain circumstances for Milford Township High School District 233. The bill was approved by the Senate Education Committee and was sent to the Senate floor for further consideration.

HB 3700 ( Osmond, R-Antioch) requires the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) to distribute to school boards information on screening instruments available to identify students who exhibit potential indicators of dyslexia. The bill, opposed by the Alliance, was held in the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee so the sponsor can bring back an agreed amendment.

HB 4268 (Ives, R-Wheaton) requires that once an agreement is reached between a public or educational employer and its employees regarding all of the terms of a collective bargaining agreement, the agreement shall be reduced to writing and published on the website of the public or educational employer. It also requires the employer, not less than 14 days after publishing such an agreement, to hold an open public meeting on the ratification of that agreement. The bill, opposed by the Alliance, failed in the House State Government Administration Committee.

HB 4336 ( Jakobsson, D-Urbana) changes references relating to General Educational Development (GED) testing and certificates to high school equivalency testing and certificates. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

HB 4437 ( Halbrook, R-Charleston), in the Open Meetings Act, deletes a provision which provided that if a notice or agenda is not continuously available for the required period due to actions outside of the control of the public body, then that lack of availability does not invalidate any meeting or action taken at a meeting. The bill was placed in a sub-committee of the House State Government Administration Committee.

HB 4438 ( Halbrook) amends the Open Meetings Act to provide that if a person requests information from a public body during a meeting and does not get a response during the meeting, then the public body shall provide a written response to the request prior to or at its next meeting. The bill was placed in a sub-committee of the House State Government Administration Committee.

HB 4522 (Chapa La Via, D-Aurora) allows two or more (instead of four or more) contiguous school districts with all or a portion of their territory located within the geographic boundaries of the same municipality to jointly operate, through an institution of higher education located in the municipality, a science and mathematics partnership school for serving some or all of grades kindergarten through eight. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

HB 4527 (Chapa La Via) requires a charter school to comply with all federal and state laws and rules applicable to public schools that pertain to special education and the instruction of English language learners. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

HB 4558 (Drury, D-Highwood) provides that the definition of "School Student Record" includes the following information used by or assigned to an individual student: ( i) any unique identification number; (ii) any unique user name, other than the student's name itself; and (iii) any other unique information used to identify an individual student. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

HB 4767 (Chapa La Via) makes changes to the Alternative Route to Teacher Certification program. The bill was approved by the House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee and was sent to the House floor for further consideration.

BILLS SCHEDULED FOR COMMITTEE NEXT WEEK

SENATE EDUCATION COMMITTEE
Tuesday, Mar. 4, 2:00 p.m., Room 400, State Capitol

SB 3274 (Holmes, D-Aurora) allows a teacher who teaches physical education or health education in the public schools to meet the requirements for highly qualified status that apply to teachers who teach in core academic subjects pursuant to the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.

SB 3310 ( Bertino-Tarrant, D-Plainfield) with respect to school personnel training on ( i) food allergies, (ii) the use of psychotropic and psychostimulant medications, (iii) youth who are parents, expectant parents, or victims of domestic or sexual violence, (iv) educator ethics, teacher-student conduct, and school employee-student conduct, and (v) diabetes care, training is required only upon employment of a person, the renewal of a person's license, or a change to a person's job duties that would require this training.

SB 3311 ( Bertino-Tarrant) ,in provisions concerning leases and installment contracts, provides for an exception to the prohibition on indebtedness not exceeding the debt limits provided by applicable law if the indebtedness is incurred by a school district or regional office of education to purchase or lease equipment.

SB 3407 (Connelly, R-Wheaton) requires ISBE to collect and maintain information concerning state mandates for schools, determine the statewide implementation of state mandates for schools, review school district applications for reimbursement submitted under the Act where the General Assembly has appropriated funds to reimburse school districts for costs associated with the implementation of a state mandate, and annually report to the governor and the General Assembly regarding the administration of the Act and changes proposed to the Act that concern schools. This bill is an Alliance initiative.

SB 3412 ( Steans, D-Chicago) requires ISBE to establish the academic standards that are to be applicable to students who are subject to state assessments, with public participation.

HOUSE ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION COMMITTEE
Wednesday, Mar. 5, 8:30 a.m., Room D-1, Stratton Office Building

HB 3695 (Dunkin, D-Chicago) allows one of the three years of mathematics that a pupil must successfully complete as a prerequisite to receiving a high school diploma to be an Advanced Placement computer science course.  

HB 4207 (Fine, D-Glenview) prohibits a student from being subjected to bullying through the transmission of information from a computer that is accessed at a non-school-related location, activity, function, or program or from the use of technology or an electronic device that is not owned, leased, or used by a school district if the bullying substantially interferes with or limits the victim's ability to participate in services, activities, or opportunities offered by a school.    

HB 4424 ( Tryon, R-Crystal Lake) permits a school board to excuse pupils in grades 9 through 12 from engaging in physical education courses if those pupils request to be excused and are enrolled in two or more Advanced Placement courses.

HB 4612 ( Sandack, R-Downers Grove) provides that any two or more school districts that share the same boundaries may combine transportation activities to achieve savings to these school districts as well as this state.  

HB 4616 ( Cavaletto, R-Salem) allows a school board to use remaining funds on hand in the Fire Prevention and Safety Fund for required safety inspections.  

HB 4655 (Davis, W., D-East Hazel Crest) provides for the expulsion of pupils by removing a pupil from a school or educational setting for a period of more than 10 school days for posing a significant threat of imminent serious harm to other pupils or to staff (instead of providing for the expulsion of pupils guilty of gross disobedience or misconduct).

HB 4680 (Pritchard, R-Sycamore) provides that no elementary or high school district established pursuant to the Conversion and Formation of School Districts Article may levy taxes for educational purposes at a rate greater than 2.0% of the value as equalized or assessed by the Department of Revenue or for operations and maintenance purposes at a rate greater than 0.375% of the value as equalized or assessed by the Department of Revenue.

HB 4775 (Hoffman, D-Belleville) allows a school board to suspend a student for a period not to exceed 10 school days or to expel a student for a definite period of time not to exceed two calendar years, as determined on a case-by-case basis, if the student has been charged with a violent felony and the charges are pending or if the student has been convicted of a violent felony.   

HB 5393 ( McAsey, D-Romeoville) amends the Educator Licensure Article of the School Code with respect to the Illinois Teaching Excellence Program. It removes language that provides that the monetary assistance and incentives that qualified educators are eligible for must be based on outlined priorities.

HB 5556 ( McAsey) amends the Children with Disabilities Article of the School Code. It adds one non-voting member to the Illinois Purchased Care Review Board and requires the member to be an administrator of a private, nonpublic, special education school.

HB 5619 (Fortner, R-West Chicago) provides that for the purposes of implementation of ordinances by a plan commission or planning department regarding developer donations or impact fees, the definition of "school grounds" includes technological infrastructure.

HB 5621 (Fortner) provides that as a prerequisite to receiving a high school diploma, each pupil entering the 9th grade in the 2015-2016 school year or a subsequent school year must successfully complete ( i) 4 (instead of 3) years of mathematics, which may include math-intensive courses outside of traditional mathematics courses (instead of one of which must be Algebra I and one of which must include geometry content), and (ii) 3 (instead of 2) years of science, one of which must be a laboratory science.

HB 5716 ( Brauer, R-Springfield) requires school boards to ensure that school building emergency and crisis response plans are accessible in a digital format.

HB 5840 (Burke, K., D-Oak Lawn) requires ISBE to collect and maintain information concerning state mandates for schools, determine the statewide implementation of state mandates for schools, review school district applications for reimbursement submitted under the Act where the General Assembly has appropriated funds to reimburse school districts for costs associated with the implementation of a state mandate, and annually report to the governor and the General Assembly regarding the administration of the Act and changes proposed to the Act that concern schools. This bill is an Alliance initiative.

HOUSE ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION COMMITTEE
Wednesday, Mar. 5, 2:00 p.m., Room 114 State Capitol

HB 3724 (Burke, D., D-Chicago) requires training on how to properly administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation and how to use an automated external defibrillator to be included in high school health education classes and a prerequisite to receiving a high school diploma.   

HOUSE HIGHER EDUCATION COMMITTEE
Wednesday, Mar. 5, 3:00 p.m., Room C-1, Stratton Office Building

HB 4257 (Chapa La Via) provides that a student who takes a College Board Advanced Placement examination and receives a score of three or higher on the examination is entitled to receive postsecondary level course credit at a public institution of higher education. Each public institution of higher education must comply with the same standard of awarding course credit to any student receiving a score of three or higher on a College Board Advanced Placement examination and applying the credit to meet a corresponding course requirement for degree completion at that institution of higher education.

This legislative report is written and edited by the lobbyists of the Illinois Association of School Boards to provide information to the members of the organizations that comprise the Statewide School Management Alliance.

Bill Text/Status: Illinois General Assembly www.ilga.gov


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